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U.S. Department of Justice Officials On Campus

By Erika Mantz, Media Relations
March 31, 2010

U.S. Attorney John Kacavas listens as a UNH student shares his experiences with Bystander Intervention Program. Photos: Mike Ross, Photographic Services.

U.S. Department of Justice officials visited UNH Monday as part of a nationwide college campus tour to raise awareness of violence against women. The tour is part of the Justice Department’s year-long commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). They spoke with students about ways to prevent violence against women on college campuses, and the role that federal, state and local government, working with university staff, faculty and students, should play.

Since 1999, OVW has distributed approximately $87 million to 300 institutions of higher education; UNH has received three grants. The goal of grant activities at UNH is to reduce domestic and dating violence, sexual assault and stalking on the campus through an integrated project involving capacity building, primary prevention, and awareness. Activities include the development, evaluation and implementation of a bystander intervention prevention program; mandatory trainings for the UNH Police Department, UNH Security staff, and Judicial and Mediation Programs’ staff and volunteers; and increased police patrols.

The Honorable Susan B. Carbon, director-designate of the Office on Violence Against Women, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich, and UNH Police Chief Nicholas Halias.

"My visit to the University of New Hampshire was very worthwhile,” said Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich. “I had the opportunity to learn about their cutting-edge approach to violence against women and their bystander intervention program.  And importantly, I heard from students who are part of the team that is working to reduce incidents of sexual violence."

Robert Eckstein, lecturer in psychology and justice studies and curriculum development specialist and trainer, Pprevention Innovations:  Research and Practices for Ending Violence Against Women on Campus, facilitated the discussion with students.

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